Department of Sociology

Carmen Gutierrez

M.A., University of Texas at Austin

Carmen Gutierrez



Carmen is a doctoral student in the Department of Sociology and a research trainee in the Population Research Center (PRC) at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research explores topics within crime, law, and deviance through a demographic lens.

Carmen’s past projects focused on the effects of changes in U.S. immigration policy on national crime trends. Specifically, she explored the impact of localized immigration enforcement on the experiences of Latinos living in the United States. Her master’s thesis examined how restrictions in immigration policy influence internal migration patterns among foreign- and U.S.-born Latinos. She also worked with Dr. David Kirk on an investigation of the spatial relationship between crime reporting and the concentration of immigrants within a metropolitan area. Carmen’s article with Kirk, Silence Speaks: The Relationship between Immigration and the Underreporting of Crime, is forthcoming in Crime & Delinquency. Her pre-dissertation research was supported by a number of grants and fellowships through the University of Texas at Austin, including: the C.B. Smith Endowment for studies on United States-Mexico relations, Department of Sociology, College of Liberal Arts, and the PRC’s Pre-doctoral Traineeship in population studies sponsored by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD).

As a legal scholar and demographer who studies the consequences of law and policy changes on social processes, Carmen expands her prior knowledge on immigration and crime in her dissertation research on the intersection between health and the criminal justice system. She is currently conducting a comprehensive analysis of healthcare—access and utilization—as well as health—behaviors and outcomes—among individuals with prior involvement in the criminal justice system. Her dissertation is chaired by Dr. Becky Pettit and is supported by the Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) through the National Science Foundation.

Carmen is the founder and a current member of the Crime, Law, and Deviance (CLD) Research Working Group, which she initiated in the fall of 2014. She has also served as a visiting scholar at the Southern Center for Human Rights and the Division of Violence Prevention at the CDC (Centers for Disease Control).

Prior to entering graduate school at UT, Carmen received her B.A. in Sociology and Spanish at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

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